Sunday 17 November 2019

Three British teenagers 'detained in Istanbul trying to join Islamic State'

Independent.ie News Desk

Three British teenagers have been detained in the Turkish city of Istanbul as they planned to cross the border into neighbouring Syria.

Turkish officials said it is believed the trio were attempting to join the militant Islamic State group.

The three, who have not been named but are aged 18 and 19, were seized on Friday and arrangements are underway to deport them back to Britain.

Police in London said they had been made aware that two 17-year-old boys had gone missing and were thought to be travelling to Syria.

Further inquiries revealed they had travelled with a 19-year-old male.

"Officers alerted the Turkish authorities who were able to intercept all three males, preventing travel to Syria. They remain in detention in Turkey. The families have been kept informed of developments," the police statement said.

Turkey has faced criticism for not better controlling its southeastern borders after three British schoolgirls entered the country and slipped across its border with Syria to joined Islamic State forces.

Read More: WATCH: ISIS schoolgirls - Footage emerges of man 'aiding' three girls on their journey to Syria

On Thursday, the Turkish Foreign Minister said the girls had been helped to cross the border by a spy working for one of the country's in the US-led coalition against the militants.

Islamic State controls swathes of territory in Syria and Iraq. It has attracted thousands of foreign fighters from Europe and elsewhere.

Reuters

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